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Sunday, November 27, 2022

Incessant road crashes: ODSG goes tough on Okada operators

By Michael Ofulue

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Following series of accidents caused by recklessness  of some motorcycle operators popularly called Okada, the Ondo State Government said it has mapped out measures to ensure that those operators are being guided by reliant rules and regulations specified by the authorities concerned.

To this end, the government has vowed to punish any motorcycle operator caught without reliant papers or number plate, for disobedient to lawful order.

Reacting to the recent crashes in the state, the Senior Special Assistant to the Ondo State Governor on Security Matters, Alhaji Jimoh Dojumo, who spoke on behalf of the government on the matter, said the law banning okada from plying the road beyond 8pm still subsists.

It will be recalled that two separate okada accidents occurred along. Fiwasaye area in Akure on Tuesday involving a Sienna bus while a Toyota Corolla car was involved in another crash on Wednesday in front of the Ministry  of Agriculture in Alagbaka area, Akure , the state capital.

Though, the two unfortunate crashes recorded no casualty, the okada riders and their passengers on board sustained varying degrees of injuries.

Dojumo said a good number of motorcycles have been impounded by Amotekun Corps and that there was never a time the law prohibiting okada operations belong 7pm  in the state was relaxed, adding that Amotekun will continue to arrest defaulters.

He also appealed to road users, especially those in the metropolis to desist from overspeeding, saying there are avoidable accidents if people observed the laws of driving.

Speaking with The Hope Metro, Mr Jide Kolawole, a civil servant, said it is high time the recklessness of the motorcycle operators were checkmated by reliant security agencies and the State Government.

He stated that in the last few days, no fewer than 10 separate accidents caused by Okada operators occur every day and victims of such incidents are either wounded with the unlucky ones dying  in the process.

According to him, vehicles of victims are damaged and sometimes the owners of such vehicles are left to foot the bill of repairing  their vehicles  because most of the  riders , who cause the accidents most times could not afford to pay the bills.

He suggested that Government should direct  the leaders of Okada Riders Association in the state to caution them about reckless driving in the town and also compel them to obey and observe some driving rules and regulations to avoid  avoidable crashes.

Also, Michael Okonta, a motorcycle operator said, some of their men are always in a hurry to make much money and thereby driving dangerously.

He disclosed that some of the reckless okada riders are on hire purchase and that majority of them did not undergo any training on how to ride motorbike before they enter the roads, thereby causing accidents here and there.

In his view,  Mr Sina Adeyeye said separate lanes should be dedicated for Okada on all our roads in the state just like the BRT in Lagos and in neighbouring Benin republic.

“A powerful Task Force should be set up for monitoring and implementation while serious sanction should be meted out to defaulters.

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